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Museums

Karamanly House Museum, Tripoli
Karamanly House Museum, Tripoli

Not surprisingly, in view of Libya’s important Greek and Roman classical antiquities, there are numerous museums in Libya at most of the major classical archaeological sites, for example the Apollonia Museum (at Susa), Cyrene, Leptis Magna, the Punic Museum of Sabratha, and Tolmeitha. The Islamic period is covered by the Islamic Museum of Tripoli and the Karamanly House Museum (also in Tripoli). Most of the major towns and cities have local museums – Bayda, Benghazi, Derna, Zliten, Ghadames, and Janzur.

Tripoli has many museums, including ones specializing in epigraphy, ethnography, natural history, and prehistory, as well as the Red Castle Museum. There is a military museum at Tobruk.

The modern art of Libya is on display at the Dar al-Founoun in Tripoli, a complex established in 1993 by Ali Ramadan. The building was formerly the French embassy. The complex includes painters such as Ali al-Albani from Tarhuna, who paints contemporary landscapes. Ali Zwaik (Ezouik) and Ramadan Abu Ras are known for their abstract paintings and Ataf al-Somali for her watercolours.

Mohamed Zwawi (1936-2011) was a famous Libyan cartoonist born in Benghazi. He drew cartoons for both the pre-Gaddafi and the Gaddafi-era press, specializing in political and acerbic social cartoons. He died in June 2011, and his funeral in Tripoli was widely attended.

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